Photos of the Day
June 26 - Pacific Ocean
Today's Graphic of the Day is of the weather chart for the waters between San Francisco and Hawaii, which are now being sailed by the eight boats in the 13th running of the Singlehanded Sailing Society singlehanded race to Kauai. Ten days into the race, you can see that there's light to moderate wind - which has pretty much been the case since the start.
In a typical race from San Francisco to Hawaii, a sailor can expect the first two days to feature strong northwesterly winds and mean seas, followed by less boisterous conditions but endless days of dull overcast. Not this time.
The fleet reported getting away on June
15 in 18 to 22 knots of wind and moderate seas. On the second
day, Mark Deppe of the San Francisco-based J/120 Alchera
reported "10 to 15 knots of wind, blue skies, warm breezes
- almost like we're in the tropics already." If any singlehander
reported warm breezes two days out of San Francisco, we'd have
thought he'd flipped, but others in the fleet were concurring.
On July 21, Deppe reported very little wind, but that he was at last halfway across. With 1040 miles to go, he had a 105-mile lead over Freeman on Seabird, a 111-mile lead on Erik Schartz on the San Francisco-based Santa Cruz 40 Rusalka, and a 115-mile lead on Tony Carr and the Alameda-based Hobie 33 Tease.
On July 22, it was more light breezes and flat water - although there was, as normal, a little more wind for the southerly boats. As is also normal, some of the singlehanders were experiencing various forms of disorientation. Deppe reported that "I've started to have flashbacks from when I did this trip back in '96. It happened just as I wake up and realize that I'm on a boat, laying in the quarterberth, sailing to Hawaii, but something's wrong, everything is switched around, what's happening to me? That's because the quarterberth on Alchera is on the opposite side from that of my last boat. But my mind goes through this momentary state of panic when it realizes that reality doesn't conform to its model of the world. I've also started hearing the little voices that the boat makes. Little noises that sound like someone talking just out of the range of hearing, or like a party going on where you can make out several different conversations but not well enough to understand anything. And the ghosts in your peripheral vision, like someone standing just out of your sight."
June 23 was more light air with Kauai DDW. Boats were having to gibe downwind, and skippers were hoping for any kind of wind shift that would allow them to sail more effectively toward the finish.
Yesterday's report was of more light wind. Deppe, the leader, was frustrated to the point of saying that it "sucked", as they'd all entered the event to do some surfing, but there was neither the wind nor waves necessary. Equally as frustrating was the fact he kept hearing voices that said, "Got milk? Got Milk"? At last report, Deppe had built his lead and was 478 miles out of Hanalei Bay.
Just a Reminder
June 26 - SF Bay
Just because you're under sail doesn't mean you always have the right of way.
June 26 - Monte Carlo
June 26 - San Francisco
June 26 - The Pacific Ocean and Cyberspace
Who is out making passages in the Pacific and what kind of weather are they having? Check out YOTREPS - 'yacht reports' - at http://www.bitwrangler.com/yotreps/
June 26 - Pacific Ocean
San Francisco Bay Weather
To see what the winds are like on the Bay and just outside the Gate right now, check out http://sfports.wr.usgs.gov/wind/. The National Weather Service site for San Francisco Bay is at www.wrh.noaa.gov/Monterey/.
California Coast Weather
Looking for current as well as recent wind and sea readings from 17 buoys and stations between Pt. Arena and the Mexican border? Here's the place - which has further links to weather buoys and stations all over the U.S.: www.ndbc.noaa.gov/stuff/southwest/swstmap.shtml.
Pacific Winds and Pressure
The University of Hawaii Dept. of Meteorology page posts a daily map of the NE Pacific Ocean barometric pressure and winds.
Pacific Sea State